Communist Party of Bohemia and Moravia


Communist Party of Bohemia and Moravia
Communist Party of Bohemia and Moravia
Komunistická strana Čech a Moravy
Leader Vojtěch Filip
Founded 1989
Headquarters Politických Vězňů 9, Prague
Ideology Communism
Marxism
Political position Left
International affiliation None
European affiliation Party of the European Left (Observer)
European Parliament Group European United Left–Nordic Green Left
Official colours Red
Chamber of Deputies
26 / 200
Senate
2 / 81
European Parliament
4 / 22
Regional councils
114 / 675
Local councils
3,252 / 62,178
Website
http://www.kscm.cz/
Politics of the Czech Republic
Political parties
Elections
Czech Republic

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The Communist Party of Bohemia and Moravia (Czech: Komunistická strana Čech a Moravy), abbreviated to KSČM, is a political party in the Czech Republic. It has a membership of 82,994 (2006) and is a member party of the European United Left - Nordic Green Left bloc in the European Parliament. It is the only former ruling party in post-communist Central Eastern Europe which has not dropped the communist title from its name, although it changed its party program to suit laws adopted after 1989.[citation needed]

It was formed in 1989 by the Congress of the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia which decided to create a party for the territories of Bohemia and Moravia, the areas that were to become the Czech Republic.

In 1990 the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia became a federation of the Communist Party of Bohemia and Moravia and the Communist Party of Slovakia. Later, the Communist Party of Slovakia changed its name to the Party of the Democratic Left, and the federation broke up in 1992.

After the party's second congress in 1992, several groups split away. The Party of the Democratic Left and The Left Bloc were the most important ones, and they eventually merged into the Party of Democratic Socialism. The latter party does some joint work, and co-operates with the Communist Party of Bohemia and Moravia.

Another split was the formation of the Party of Czechoslovak Communists (later renamed the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia). However, the Communist Party of Bohemia and Moravia refuses to work with this group.

In 2002 parliamentary elections, the party received 18.5% of the vote for the Czech Republic's Chamber of Deputies. This made them the third largest party in Parliament at that time, with 41 deputies.

The party was left on the sidelines for most of the first decade of the Czech Republic's existence. Vaclav Havel suspected the KSCM was still an unreconstructed Stalinist party, and kept it from having any influence during his presidency. However, the party provided the one-vote margin that elected Havel's successor as president, Vaclav Klaus [1]

In June 2004 the party came in second place in the European Parliament election in the Czech Republic, winning 6 of 24 seats.

In 2006 parliamentary elections the party scored 12.8%, coming in third and far behind the Social Democrats and sinking to 26 mandates. The leadership were disappointed at the drop in support compared to the party's 2002 results.

After a long-running battle with the Ministry of the Interior, in 2008 the KSCM's youth section – the Communist Youth Union (KSM) – was dissolved, allegedly for endorsing in its program the replacement of private with collective ownership of the means of production. The decision has met with international protests.[2]


In November 2008, the Senate of the Czech Republic asked the Supreme Court to dissolve the Communist Party of Bohemia and Moravia because of its political program, which the Senate claimed contradicted the Constitution of the Czech Republic. 30 out of the 38 senators who were present at the time agreed this request and expressed the viewpoint that the program of KSČM does not disown violence as a means of attaining power and adopts The Communist Manifesto of Karl Marx.[3]

In the 2009 European Parliament elections the Communist party received 14,18% and elected 4 (out of the 22 Czech) MEPs.

References

  1. ^ Thompson, Wayne C. (2008). The World Today Series: Nordic, Central and Southeastern Europe 2008. Harpers Ferry, West Virginia: Stryker-Post Publications. ISBN 978-1-887985-95-6. 
  2. ^ http://www.agitprop.eu/ksmappeal.html
  3. ^ iDNES.cz, ČTK (Česká tisková kancelář). "Komunisté ve světě nás nedají, říká o hrozbě rozpuštění šéf KSČM". iDnes, the online portal of Mladá fronta DNES. http://zpravy.idnes.cz/zprava-o-protiustavnosti-kscm-je-nelegitimni-mini-sef-strany-filip-110-/domaci.asp?c=A081101_164422_domaci_abr. Retrieved 8 November 2008. 

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